Visual Studio Online Frequently Asked Questions


Where can I learn about billing for my Visual Studio Online account?

You can learn more about billing for Visual Studio Online by going to the billing section of our get started pages.

What happens if I forget my username, password or account URL?

Visit Microsoft Account Password Reset to recover your Microsoft account or password. You can find your account URL on the Account tab.

How do I change my account URL?

You can change your account URL from your account settings page. See the Service Update for January 9, 2013 for instructions.

How do I change the owner of my account?

You can change the owner of your account from your account settings page. See the Change Account Ownership topic in our Get Started section for instructions.

How can I close or delete my Visual Studio Online account?

If you don’t need your account anymore, follow these steps to delete your account.

Can I use a work account with Visual Studio Online (VSO)?

Yes, but your VSO account must be set up for work accounts. If you don’t have a VSO account, find out how to sign up for Visual Studio Online with a work account. If you have an existing VSO account, find out how to set up Visual Studio Online for work accounts. Otherwise, you must use Microsoft accounts to sign in.

Can I use a work account with my MSDN subscription?

Yes, after you activate your MSDN subscription with your Microsoft account. You can then add a work account to your subscription on the MSDN My Account page. That way, you can use this work account with Visual Studio Online and Microsoft Azure, if your subscription includes these benefits. You get the same level of benefits whether you use a work account or a Microsoft account. Find out how to add a work account to your MSDN subscription.

I'm having trouble assigning “Eligible MSDN Subscriber” licenses. Where can I get help?
As you adopt Visual Studio Online and assign licenses to your users, you may want to assign the “Eligible MSDN Subscriber” license type to team members. The Visual Studio Online Best Practices: Troubleshooting issues with the "Eligible MSDN Subscriber” license type blog post provides detailed steps to help you.
Where can I find information about Visual Studio Online SLAs?
You can find the Visual Studio Online SLAs at the Download Center.

Security & Privacy

Why are you asking for extra information when I sign in?

When you sign in for the first time, we will ask you for some extra information so that we can personalize your experience. If our Terms of Service have changed since you last signed in, you may be asked to agree and confirm that your information is up-to-date.

How do I know my source code and project data are secure?

We follow industry best practices and have enterprise-grade security measures to help protect your code and project data. In addition, all communication between your computer and the service takes place over an encrypted HTTPS connection.

Will Microsoft claim any ownership on my code or intellectual property?

No. Your code and your IP are yours. See our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy for more information.

What will you do with my personal information?

See our Privacy Policy for details.


Does Visual Studio Online work with any development tool?

Visual Studio Online works with two major IDEs in the market today: Visual Studio and Eclipse. We also support integration with other tools through the TFS MSSCCI Provider, and with our command-line tools, which can be installed by downloading the free Team Explorer Everywhere product.

You can find downloads for these tools here:

In addition, you can use any Git client to access Team Projects with Git repositories, including:

  • Visual Studio 2015
  • Eclipse with the EGit extension
  • Xcode (using Xcode’s built-in support for Git repositories)
Can I really build apps for non-Microsoft platforms using Visual Studio?

Yes! All source code is treated equally, so for the majority of the capabilities we provide, it doesn’t make a difference what platform you’re developing for. The hosted build functionality has some restrictions; see the Hosted build controller topic in our Get Started section to learn more about what is supported.

Can I use any development language with Visual Studio Online?

Yes, you can use any language for just about any type of development project. Most features like version control, project management tools, and feedback collection are language agnostic. Some capabilities, notably build, have limitations based on our default build configuration. But, you can add the additional software that you need in order to support your build automation.

Can I use Visual Studio Online for commercial/production projects?

Yes! You can use the service for any project you like. Our terms of service support development, test, and production use.

Can I download my Visual Studio Online project data to use on my own machine?

You can use our tools in Visual Studio, Eclipse, or from the command line to keep a local copy of your source code on your machine. Today there isn’t a way to export work items or other project data to your local machine, but we’re planning on adding this capability at a later date.

What browsers do you support?

We support and regularly test against most modern browsers, including IE9 and later, Safari 4 and later, and the latest two releases of Chrome and Firefox.

How do I use the load testing features?

You can learn more about using the load testing features of Visual Studio Online at the Load test your app topic in our Get Started section.

How can I use an on-premises build controller with Visual Studio Online?

To set up an on-premises build controller with your Visual Studio Online account, follow the instructions at the Deploy and
configure a build controller
topic in the MSDN Library.

Currently, we do not have support for continuous deployment to Azure using an on-premises build controller, so if you are trying to setup continuous deployment to Azure, you will need to use a hosted build controller.

How can I get support for Application Insights?

Application Insights is in Limited Preview and is supported via the Visual Studio Application Insights forum.

How can I customize my work items or process template in Visual Studio Online?
At this time, you can’t customize work items or process templates. To help us prioritize new features, you can add your vote to this user voice request: Customize Process Template on Visual Studio.

Service availability

Is my data backed up? How often?

All data is stored in triplicate on three physically-distinct servers. Full backups are taken every day with incremental backups every hour. If you want to have your own backup of your source code, you can sync your source to your local machine.


Where do I get updates for Visual Studio and Team Foundation Server?

Servicing for the Visual Studio 2013 family of products and tools is primarily performed via our cumulative update mechanism called “VS Update.” A VS Update usually contains new features as well as fixes for existing features. Once VS Updates for the previous product are no longer produced, servicing is still available via traditional update channels (e.g. Microsoft Update, Download Center) for the lifecycle of the product. 


Where can I go for help if the answer to my question isn't here?

For information on how to get started, we have walkthroughs in our Get Started page that provide you with step-by-step guides. If that doesn't help, take a look at our support forums for more help resources from our community, as well as our support staff. For anything else, you can use the “talk to us” options at the bottom of our support page.